Is your bakery ready for the holiday rush?
The holidays can be extremely profitable but overwhelming for bakeries. This year, vow to prepare properly so you can keep your sanity and maintain a smooth operation through this critical time of year.
With the major holidays fast approaching, what can you do in the next few weeks to prepare your bakery for the inevitable rush of business?
Analyze Last Year and Learn from It
Do you have an inventory of sales from this time last year? If so, it may be your most valuable document in the preparation process. By assessing how much you sold and when, you can predict what you’ll need to order ahead. It can also help you can predict if and when you’ll need seasonal help, and for how long.
You can avoid wasting resources by using last year’s records, because while there is always a chance your numbers may differ this year, sales tend to follow similar patterns. Avoid having to tell your customers, “Sorry, we’re out of stock!” and keep the holiday spirits (and profits) high!
Never Underestimate the Popularity of the Classics
It’s fine to branch out and use the holidays as an opportunity to unleash your baking creativity, but don’t forsake the classics in your haste to be original. Pumpkin pies on Thanksgiving. Decorative sugar cookies at Christmastime. Some key staples you just can’t leave off your shelves, or customers will start asking questions! Worse, they’ll check another bakery in town.
Environment Is Important
How you decorate your bakery for the holidays will influence your customers’ buying habits. Who wants to shop at a place that barely recognizes the changing seasons? Make sure your storefront is welcoming to all holiday shoppers and your store’s interiors encourage the upsell with lights, decorations and music.
Your Employees’ Holiday Spirit Is Key
Are your employees in the holiday mood? The promise of a holiday bonus could help lift their spirits, or just a general appreciative attitude from their boss. When you happily anticipate the holiday rush and you’ve adequately stocked and staffed your store, your employees won’t feel as overwhelmed either. This helps them stay smiling so they can better help customers smile too.
Time Your Promotions Effectively
Holiday coupons and promotional offers are a good way to boost foot traffic, but don’t start advertising too early. Make sure you’re finding your customers when they’re in peak bakery buying mode — about one week before the big holiday gathering.
Stratton Sales is here to support local bakeries during all seasons, but especially the winter holiday rush, with tips, equipment and support for all your baking operations!